In an attempt to rival Twitter’s dominance in text-based social media interactions, Meta is preparing to launch its new app, “Instagram Threads” on July 6. The Verge reported that details of the release were initially discovered from the app’s Google Play Store and App Store listings over the past weekend.
Instagram Threads Features
Promoting itself as a text-based tool for Instagram, Threads allows users to engage in group discussions on a variety of topics, presenting a fresh discussion forum distinct from Twitter. It enables users to follow the same accounts they follow on Instagram, requiring an Instagram handle for logging in.
As per the official Threads website, which is already live and includes a countdown to launch, there are several interactive elements. For instance, a draggable 3D model of bright dots forms the Threads logo when viewed from a certain angle.
Further connecting it with Instagram, users’ username and display name on Threads will be consistent with those on Instagram. Blocking an account on one platform will lead to its blocking on the other. The app also claims potential integration with other federated social networks like Mastodon.
Context Behind Launch
The decision to roll out Threads follows a string of controversial changes implemented by Twitter. These changes include blocking unregistered users from viewing tweets, setting a daily rate limit for logged-in users, and planning TweetDeck’s conversion into a paid service.
Industry insiders believe that Twitter’s changes have created an opportunity for alternatives like Threads. Especially considering Twitter’s move to limit daily tweet views stirred up many user complaints over the last weekend.
Release Across Different Platforms
On Monday, iPhone users were able to pre-order Threads via a page made available on the App Store. This page also confirmed the scheduled release for July 6-7 (depending upon user location).
While Android device users will find that Threads is yet to be available for their operating system – with only a brief “Coming soon for Android” message displayed at the bottom – iOS devices show a link directing users towards downloading it. However, there’s uncertainty about whether web browser access will be possible.
Insiders revealed that initially Threads’ launch was planned for later in July. But due to disgruntled Twitter users seeking alternatives, Meta decided to expedite their debut of this microblogging network.
Under development as part of “Project Barcelona”, Threads seeks direct competition with Twitter by letting users share text content alongside photos and videos. It encourages communities form discussions around diverse subjects or trends and interact directly with favorite creators or fellow hobbyists.
Your following list on Instagram can be instantly replicated onto Threads without extra steps involved or pending requests until the concerned profiles join Threads as well. Users have control over who can follow them from their current Instagram followers list while maintaining their profile’s privacy settings. They can either approve all followers collectively or allow specific accounts access.
Integration into Fediverse
A significant aspect of Threads is how it proposes to connect with federated social networks like Mastodon – called “fediverse”. Nevertheless, these features might not be ready by launch day according to further inspection by APK Insight reviewers in the prematurely released Android version over last weekend on Google Play Stores across Europe.
When limiting replies is enabled for a post, said post will not be visible outside of Threads’ domain – restricting visibility among fediverse followers.
The developing team has also discovered within the app’s code that both services’ profile links are quite similar; appending username right after base URL “threads.net”.
Many believe that such competitive offerings by Meta could force Twitter loyalists into reconsidering their preferred social media platform while marking Meta’s entry into microblogging services.